Lion of the Blogosphere

Did Obama score 45 on the LSAT?

Steve Sailer presents evidence that Obama scored 45 on the LSAT, which was the 98th percentile.

I scored 46, which as the 99th percentile. So Obama is just a little bit less intelligent than me, and I scored high enough on graduate admission tests to qualify for the Triple Nine Society. Remember, the LSAT is only taken by college graduates who want more education, so a 98th percentile on the LSAT means one is well into the 99th percentile compared to the entire U.S. population.

* * *

To further clarify this, a score of 45 on the LSAT probably means that Obama has an IQ in the top 0.5% of the population, but not the top 0.1% of the population, which means his IQ is between 142 and 149.

How common is it for a black man to have an IQ of 145? If it’s true that there’s a 1SD IQ difference between blacks and whites, then it’s as common for a black man to have an IQ of 145 as it is for a white man to have an IQ of 160, which puts Obama in the 99.99 percentile among blacks, or one in 10,000. So if there are 35 million blacks in the United States, then Obama is among the smartest 3,500 blacks.

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

Posted in Biology

151 Responses

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  1. I doubt there’s a one-to-one correlation between LSAT and IQ. I scored a 171 (98th percentile). My idiotic ex-boyfriend scored a 172 (98.6th percentile).

    AnonGirl

    May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

    • Idiotic? Doubtful.

      Renault

      May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

    • Law school grads aren’t the brightest of the bulbs. Just look at the Obamas. If they could get into Harvard law, any prole dimwit can as well.

      STEM students are a lot smarter, but majoring in STEM makes you a beta nerd, instead of a prospective future Alpha big lawyer.

      Just Speculating

      May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

      • STEM students are smarter?

        The only STEM students smarter than HLS students are the ones at Caltech and MIT.

        Renault

        May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

      • The usual STEM student is smarter than the Obamas.

        Just Speculating

        May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

      • @ Just Speculating

        Seriously? I’ll cede to you that Michelle isn’t going to be curing cancer any time soon, but to claim that Obama isn’t smarter than your average STEM student is ridiculous. There are a whole lot of completely average college students (meaning ~115 IQ or so) who major in STEM subjects. Most STEM majors are not majoring in math at Harvard or engineering at MIT. They are majoring in civil engineering or technology management at Bumf*ck State University.

        Do you remember your STEM classes from college? I remember rooms full of completely average kids who still can’t write grown-up sentences.

        Renault

        May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

      • Assuming a discrete classification system of personality that parallels intuition, then the intersection between the set of “top law school students” and the set of “people with an alpha personality” wouldn’t contain that many elements, i.e. not many people will belong to both sets.

        Now, as follows from Bayes’ Theorem, the probability of A given B is always less than or equal to the probability of A itself. By applying this reasoning to the issue at hand, it’s therefore not surprising that having an “alpha personality” given one is a “top law school student” or vice versa has a low probability. That alone is an argument against the widespread notion that elite lawyers or lawyers in general overlap strongly with alphas; whatever the ranking of groups in terms of the probability their members have an alpha personality given their membership of the group, I suspect the differences will not be as great as commonly suggested.

        That was an argument about the fact that even if top law school students tends to have alpha personalities more often than members of other groups, it will probably still not result in many top law school students with alpha personalities. That assessment is based on the lack of evidence for any other claim. However, an even stronger argument is that top law school students in fact have a lower probability of having an alpha personality than on average. That coincides with something the Lion also has pointed out; namely that top law school students tends to be studious and have a high IQ – both of which lowers the probability of having an alpha personality. (Of course being studios and having a high IQ is positively correlated).

        Animus

        May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

      • I have no idea why some commenters think that lawyers are “alpha.” Lawyers were once law school students, and law school students are nerdy people who study a lot.

      • Lion is contradicting himself. He says the upper classes socialize and drink more than everyone else but now they’re more “nerdy”. Law is a very social profession. Schmoozing and bringing in new business is a big component. Public sector lawyers are most likely unattractive and beta but corporate lawyers aren’t.

        http://abovethelaw.com/2010/03/attractive-people-may-or-may-not-be-better-lawyers-but-they-do-get-paid-more/

        Conquistador

        May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

      • STEM types are much better at IQ tests than law school types are.

        If half the engineering grads in the country decided to go to law school, your local state school could fill its entire class with students that score higher than the Harvard average today.

        But the standards on the GMAT (MBA) test are even lower.

        You can try it yourself. Go get a copy of the official manual for the LSAT, the MCAT, and the Engineering or Physics GRE. (They’re discontinuing most GRE subject exams; check your library). Take them under the same conditions on consecutive days. Your percentile should be significantly higher on the LSAT than the MCAT and somewhat lower on the GREs.

        Law school requires real brain power but not as much as science school. Also, law schools don’t import the mass of overseas talent that disfavored professions like STEM do.

        Owen

        May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

      • STEM students aren’t necessarily smart in the sense it will impress HBDers who are obsessed with IQ, but for a person with an average work ethic it does require ~.66 STDV in g to pass a fairly lax, meaning not involving much math and emphasizing memorization over the abstract and conceptual, STEM curriculum. I was able with a two-sigma intellect about to graduate with a STEM degree (cell and molecular biology) from a typical university with a minimum of effort, primarily relying on high exam scores, although during my final semester, I was so sleep deprived that I could barely retain or comprehend anything in lectures and I did not study to compensate. I let aspergerness get me fixated on watching the Pokémon series (mostly the Kanto and Johto episodes) instead of focusing on exams and coursework. I am more proud in a quite perverse way that I watched Pokémon episodes during college and the breadth of my knowledge of molecular biology that I acquired through retaining material in class and independent reading as opposed to the attainment of a STEM credential.

        I went to went NAM-dominated university and the whites and Asians are overrepresented in STEM, and white females, such as myself, make up the majority of the weaker STEM disciplines such as those requiring a minimum of quantitative skills and physical science prowess, such as ecology. Compared to my cohorts, I was superior quantitatively and in the physical sciences, but I choose to study molecular biology precisely to avoid a quantitatively-heavy curriculum because I was intimidated by my relative inferiority in my high school mathematics classes where there were three 3-sigma boys who dominated every exam. Then, in high school, I realized that I lack raw abstract ability to flourish in mathematics and decided to focus my intellectual efforts in other disciplines emphasizing more memorization yet demanding mastery and comprehension of concepts and models. Biochemistry fits this quite nicely since it is still intellectually cognitively inaccessible for most people.

        STEM does not require specific verbal ability and quantitative ability has more utility when studying any STEM discipline. Most scientific literature is not verbally demanding though, since it just requires familiarity with the lexicon and concepts, and that can be obtained through a combination of memorization and general intelligence. I read parts of the City of God before I converted, and I could say that translations require high general verbal intelligence (and a rudimentary knowledge of Christian history and tenets) in order to comprehend Augustine’s arguments, while the opacity of scientific literature comes from its liberal references to content-specific knowledge and technical vocabulary that require one to be familiar with scientific principles and the body of knowledge that pertains the field in question.

        Black_Rose

        May 30, 2013 at EDT am

      • In NYC, lawyers come into 2 flavors.

        Prole lawyers work in boutique firms and many of them are White ethnics with heavy accents.

        SWPL lawyers work in midsize to mostly in BIGLAW firms.

        Prole Law areas are mostly personal oriented. Ambulance chasers or personal injury lawyers are proles.

        SWPL Law is mega corporate or multibillionaire based. Now Proles and SWPL lawyers do encounter each other when a small prole sues a beastly company or filthy rich individual.

        Just Speculating

        May 30, 2013 at EDT am

    • Virtually nothing correlates perfectly with IQ or any other variable. Even measurements of IQ with the same test don’t correlate perfectly with each other.

      That LSAT scores do not correlate perfectly with IQ scores is explained by the fact that IQ is only the common factor between a variety of diverse measures that explains part of the observed variance. Different measures differ in the extent to which IQ accounts for differences in test performance between individuals or groups. The LSAT would be an example of a measure whose variance is determined by IQ to a significant degree.

      That even two identical IQ tests do not yield the same score for the same individual is due to the fact that measurement variance consists of both true score variance and error variance.

      Animus

      May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

      • Given that Obama was able to graduate Magna Cum Laude, this would indicate that he actually underperformed on the LSAT and may actually be smarter.

      • “Now, as follows from Bayes’ Theorem, the probability of A given B is always less than or equal to the probability of A itself.”

        LOL wat?

        steve@steve.com

        May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

      • That even two identical IQ tests do not yield the same score for the same individual is due to the fact that measurement variance consists of both true score variance and error variance.

        Wow, I never thought psychometricians would consider “true score variance” to be a statistical or real phenomenon in IQ testing since they tend to believe that the underlying “g” is mostly static once one matures and has some control of the selection of their environments (as this is proposed to cause heritability of IQ to rise in adolescence and adulthood). I underperformed on the SAT by about 200 points (out 1600) because I was sleep deprived for two to three consecutive nights and apprehensive. I guess I am among the few people who experience a large “true score variance” since I am highly neurotic and sometimes do not get adequate sleep.

        It would seem that psychometricians believe that the score of a psychometric instrument reflects one’s “true score”, which does not change from a day-to-day or month-to-month timescale, while only statistic errors causes the differences between one’s “true score” and measured score. Since one’s true score is close to one’s intellectual potential and the statistical errors from one’s score are minimal on carefully constructed tests as those tests have a high reliability or test-retest correlation, one’s measure score reflects one’s intellectual potential.One could suppose that “true score variance” is not a practical concern for standardized testing since significant diminished performance from one’s maximum ability requires extraordinarily adverse circumstance such as bereavement and chronic sleep deprivation or abnormal psychological issues such as neuroticism as anxiety taxes critical working memory resources.

        I don’t buy arguments that Obama’s IQ is below 130 simply because he was not acknowledged by the National Merit Scholarship program; like me, as we could both experience a moment of empathy, he could just have a bad day while taking critical test, so the his mediocre performance on the PSAT would not put a ceiling on his IQ.

        Black_Rose

        May 30, 2013 at EDT pm

      • Wow, I never thought psychometricians would consider “true score variance” to be a statistical or real phenomenon in IQ testing since they tend to believe that the underlying “g” is mostly static once one matures and has some control of the selection of their environments (as this is proposed to cause heritability of IQ to rise in adolescence and adulthood).

        True score variance is only applicable as a statistical concept in the context of a set of measurements of X (e.g. IQ) by different subjects. True score variance refers to the part of the variance of a given number of data points that accurately reflects individual differences.

        What you’re discussing is error variance, which can be reduced by averaging a repeated number of measurements of X until whichever desired reliability coefficient has been obtained.

        For further reading, I suggest “The g factor” by the recently deceased psychometrician Arthur Jensen. It gives a reasonably detailed technical introduction to factor analysis and includes lots of other things as well. For a truly rigorous exposition, however, you will need other sources, but it’s a good start and serves its purpose.

        Animus

        May 30, 2013 at EDT pm

  2. A sibling of mine attends a T-14 law school but I never asked “what they scored” so what exactly led you to attend a crappy law school?

    Conquistador

    May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

  3. “So Obama is just a little bit less intelligent than me, and I scored high enough on graduate admission tests to qualify for the Triple Nine Society.”

    lol. And who went to Harvard and who went to Arizona State?

    Chris P.

    May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

    • That’s why I tell people to not make the mistakes I made.

      • Maybe some of the newer readers don’t understand. This entire blog is one big lamentation. Lion is a failure by his own standards and most of his posts are intended to explain why.

        Steven

        May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

      • My posts are advice so young readers can avoid my fate.

      • Not too many young people will avoid your fate, since not too many young people have parents who can put them into HYPS thru legacy and only at most a couple thousand/year will get to attend there without it.

        Colmainen

        May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

      • Not too many young people will avoid your fate, since not too many young people have parents who can put them into HYPS thru legacy and only at most a couple thousand/year will get to attend there without it.

        “Don’t attend ASU law school” is more valuable advice than “attend HYPS” because far more people can benefit from it.

        Tarl

        May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

    • Were lion of swarthy complexion, he would have been a shoe in.

      islandmommy

      May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

    • I thought Lion was an ex-Penn kid. Was Arizona State grad school? It would be disappointing if Lion didn’t go to Penn. Penn kids are universally hated by my SWPL friends, especially by the ones who work there. As a general rule, I like everything they hate and take/took pleasure in reading a blog that’s written by someone who they’d consider the scum of the Earth just because of where he went to college.

      By the way, I’ve employed a recent Penn graduate for a little over a year. She performs a semi-skilled job that doesn’t pay particularly well and is usually held by Hispanic women. Her major wasn’t the best choice.

      Robert

      May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

      • Are you talking about Penn State or U Penn? There is a big difference in prestige.

        Just Speculating

        May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

      • “Penn” always means University of Pennsylvania. No one just says Penn when they mean Penn State.

        Scipio Africanus

        May 30, 2013 at EDT am

      • Scipio, not always true as I heard some Penn State prole grads say they went to “Penn”.

        Just Speculating

        May 30, 2013 at EDT am

      • @Just Speculating

        I meant UPenn and agree with Scipio. People who go to/went to Penn State always call it “Penn State.”

        Robert

        May 30, 2013 at EDT pm

  4. I have no doubt that he’s very intelligent. The HBD blogosphere has been infested with too many racists who are in it primarily to boost their damaged egos. I applaud Lion’s efforts to present HBD in a clean, inoccuous, somewhat implicit manner and to police the comments from degenerating too much into unprincipled ranting.

    AsianDude

    May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

    • Don’t you realize that this blog would be considered quite racist by mainstream, PC standards?

      Allerious

      June 2, 2013 at EDT am

  5. Why then ASU law school?

    Nicolai Yezhov

    May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

    • The purpose of this blog is so that young readers don’t make the same mistakes that I did.

      • Most people who don’t know much about law schools would think that Arizona State’s law school is pretty good. After all, ASU is a well-respected institution, the largest university in a big metropolitan area and one of the biggest public universities in the country.

        Peter

        ironrailsironweights

        May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

      • It’s not a mistake to think ASU is a good school. It is in the top 30 when it comes to law schools. However, unbeknowest to most, only the top 13 law schools (Georgetown is debatable) give you a good chance of getting a job that will pay all your debt down in a reasonable amount of time. Unless, of course, you get a scholarship to a lower-ranked school, then the investment is usually worth it.

        Chris P.

        May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

      • Correct, there are now only 13 top law schools, Gtown has dropped out.

      • ASU is a well-respected institution, the largest university in a big metropolitan area and one of the biggest public universities in the country.

        Uh, whut now? It is only the second most respected university in Arizona. And being a big public university is good how exactly?

        Tarl

        May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

      • I am in my early twenties and Lion’s blog has helped me see the world more clearly. This blog has influenced my decisions more than anything else I have read on the internet.

        de Broglie

        May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

      • I went to a law school that fell in rank since I graduated. It was in 20-25 territory in the 80s. Now ranked in the mid-thirties (ouch). The tuition was cheap but the school was hyper-liberal, the women pathetic, the weather lousy and the law school located at a distance from the main campus so there was no access to undergraduate tail. At least at ASU you must have had some serious tail running around, no? My lessons are: 1) don’t go cheap on education (I turned down better schools because of cost); and 2) if you do go cheap (if there is such a thing these days) find a school with hot women.

        Curle

        May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

    • Could anyone elaborate on why Gtown is no-longer a top-tier law school. Did it do anything that cause it to drop in prestige or there is simply no more room at the top as in BIGLAW jobs?

      Black_Rose

      May 30, 2013 at EDT pm

  6. I gather an organic chemistry class is a lot harder than a law school class at Havard.

    Just Speculating

    May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

    • Getting a good grade at HLS is more difficult than just passing Organic Chemistry.

    • For the type of person who typically attends law school, organic chemistry would be utterly impossible even with diligent study.

      Peter

      ironrailsironweights

      May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

      • I agree completely.

        AnonGirl

        May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

      • A person that attends Harvard Law School is not a person that typically attends law school.

        Animus

        May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

      • This is true even of some physical chemistry professors believe it or not. I had trouble until I got it and then did a PhD in it.

        What you’re missing is that g is largely just jive. Two people with exactly the same IQ and g score on whatever battery may have very different factor scores.

        It may also seem a great tragedy to the engineering and CS folks that of all the Wechsler’s subtests the most g-loaded and most reliable is vocabulary.

        The good O-chem student might have trouble at HLS.

        Nicolai Yezhov

        May 30, 2013 at EDT pm

    • Organic chemistry is just an intro class designed to weed out average college kids from slightly above average college kids. Passing the class (at a school that uses it as a weed-out class) really just takes hard work and some memorization.

      Classes at HLS force you to compete against an entire school full of type-A hard working people, most of whom scored above 170 on the LSAT.

      How are these even in the same ballpark? Hell, I’d say that even the easy classes at HBS (where grades matter far less) are more difficult than college-level organic chemistry.

      Renault

      May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

      • Apples and oranges, as the old expression goes. Getting through organic chemistry requires the sort of innate science and math ability that most law students completely lack. Granted, even the more technophobic students at HLS may have high enough I.Q. scores that they would be able to muddle through O-chem, but that certainly isn’t true at most law schools.

        Peter

        ironrailsironweights

        May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

      • Typical, “I’m a math and science guy. My sheer arrogant assertion of facts (of course being outside the domain of any of the hard sciences or math, my field of expertise) is correct.”

        It’s the equivalent of Richard Dawkins saying “There is no God” over and over again and then calling it “science”, which is supposed to be some sort of “argument” despite having poor theological/philosophical training which would prevent such poor argumentation.

        The truth is that I doubt you would know if HLS students could pass o-chem or not or if any had taken classes in o-chem.

        Chris P.

        May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

  7. The population that takes the LSAT is not a representative sample of college graduates. LSAT takers are, on average, more intelligent but also highly intelligent college graduates are underrepresented (because they have better things to do) so really high LSAT scores don’t mean what you seem to think they do.

    reynald

    May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

    • Wrong, only the smarter college graduates are interested in more education. The typical college graduate is relieved that the bordeom of education is finally over.

      • That’s what I said. LSAT takers are more intelligent on average so that someone scoring in the 50th percentile on the LSAT Is more more intelligent than the 50th percentile college graduates.

        I also said that the most intelligent college graduates are not that interested in law school so a really high lsat score, like 99.5th percentile, does not mean that the person is in the the 99.5th percentile of college graduates but is actually substantially lower.

        The valid criticism is that my post, like most of your posts, is just me talking out of my ass and saying stuff that seems plausible to other bitter socially maladjusted men while providing no substantiating evidence.

        The irony of course is that you failed to do the very thing that the LSAT tests after bragging about your score.

        reynald

        May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

      • Plenty of very highly intelligent college grads go to law school. At my ivy college, lots of summa cum laude people went to law school. They are usually the types that are uninterested in the sciences or being a finance guy. Law school is almost like the default option for the humanities folks, which is one of the reasons why there is a glut of lawyers.

        AsianDude

        May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

      • It’s not a question of whether “plenty” or “lots” of highly intelligent people took the LSAT it’s a question of how many took it relative to other levels of intelligence.

        Also, I don’t know how true it is, but the summa cum laude graduates are generally not considered the most intelligent but rather intelligent people with the best work ethic, study skills, and easy class choosing ability.

        Also, again Im just talking out of my ass, but you are talking about the humanities where the students are not as smart on average and there are not as many very highly intelligent people as other fields.

        reynald

        May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

      • Humanities students are usually the smartest; just because they find STEM boring and they have rich parents doesn’t mean they aren’t smart.

        Humanities students are relatively small minority. Most students major in something that sounds vocational.

      • But we’re talking about the very smartest students, which is a tiny unrepresentative fraction, so what “most students” do isn’t relevant. And the smartest students are not generally majoring in things that “sound vocational” unless you are some sort of horrible snob who thinks that anything substantial is vocational.

        And according to your own standards of LSAT scores representing intelligence, the humanities students are not the most intelligent.

        Remember the only thing I said that we disagree on is that 99.5th percentile on the LSAT equates to something less than 99.5th percentile of college graduates because the super intelligent college graduates are relatively underrepresented among those taking the LSAT.

        reynald

        May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

      • “But we’re talking about the very smartest students, which is a tiny unrepresentative fraction, so what “most students” do isn’t relevant. And the smartest students are not generally majoring in things that “sound vocational” unless you are some sort of horrible snob who thinks that anything substantial is vocational”.

        I once met a guy who earned a JD/MBA/CPA all within the same tier 1 school, with technical certifications ranging from Microsoft, Cisco to CISSP security professional that he earned at a vocational school.

        This guy built his own servers and installed his own network for his office.

        Talking about being over the top!

        Just Speculating

        May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

      • Humanities students are usually the smartest;

        Humanities students are the stupidest undergrads.

        They don’t even know much about great literature and the arts since most of their knowledge in that field is limited to higher brow pop culture. The next time you get a lecture from a lib-arts type, surprise him by asking him who wrote Anna Karenina and then laugh in their face when they draw a blank. I’d bet a higher percentage of engineering students would give the right answer than a humanities major.

        The Undiscovered Jew

        May 30, 2013 at EDT pm

      • The next time you get a lecture from a lib-arts type, surprise him by asking him who wrote Anna Karenina and then laugh in their face when they draw a blank. I’d bet a higher percentage of engineering students would give the right answer than a humanities major.

        I only knew the answer because it was an oprah book club pick. LOL

        Bottledwater

        May 31, 2013 at EDT pm

    • People in math tend to think that if you can’t do math then you aren’t very smart. I mean 3rd and 4th year math courses that involve proofs. You have to be good at logic to do math proofs. Some people can’t do math proofs at all, the way some people can’t, for example, sing.

      Maybe everyone thinks people in their own area of study are the smartest, the way everyone thinks they are good drivers. But math has traditionally been used to screen people out, particularly calculus. But Calculus isn’t particularly difficult. In the old days they used to do a year of geometry proofs in the tenth grade, perhaps to screen people out from the sciences. The study of pure logic is the only humanities course I can think of that would determine how good a person is at reasoning. But I don’t know much about humanities.

      My mother and father were both lawyers. They took law at the University of British Columbia soon after WW II , when it was a brand new law school. They warned my sister and I not to go into law (we both went into sciences). My father wanted to go into engineering but they told him he was too old! Since he had been in the air force during the war (a pilot) the government was paying his way, and he had to do what they said.

      Melykin

      May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

      • That some people can’t do (basic) mathematical proofs (or something requiring a similar level of mathematical reasoning) is not equivalent in the way you suggest to some people being unable to sing well. If you have a high level of general intelligence, you’ll do well in math independent of any lack of specific mathematical aptitude (short of having a learning disability in the area). That is because mental tests measure two factors: general intelligence and specific aptitude. In other words, you can compensate for lack of mathematical aptitude with high general intelligence (in proportion to your relative levels of each). The Study of Mathematically Precocious Youth suggests that a lot of girls who reason well mathematically do so, because they also reason well verbally and thus have a (really) high level of general intelligence, whereas boys can reason well mathematically without excellent verbal reasoning ability and thus have comparatively lower general intelligence. (Note that the boys who score above 700 on the SAT-M before the age of 13, which indicates ability at least at the one in 10,000 level, typically reason excellently verbally as well, but for girls to have that level of mathematical reasoning, they typically need to score higher on the SAT-V than boys have to – I’m using relative terms.)

        If you have a lot of general musical ability, you might still not be a terrific singer, because it doesn’t load as much on general musical ability as mathematical ability does on general intelligence.

        Animus

        May 30, 2013 at EDT am

  8. I thought Lion went to UPenn undergrad and NYU Law, no?

    AsianDude

    May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

    • Seriously? Not even NYU? I thought NYU was the minimum “worthwhile” law school to go if one was from a top college, unless one had very specific aspirations that are better somewhere else or if one was independently rich or received a full ride scholarship. I can’t even think of one person I know who went to ASU law – and Lion’s not even from Arizona.

      AsianDude

      May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

  9. Obama may have an IQ of 145, but like every other human is a slave to his emotions. This is why right wingers, crypto-neo-nazis and Tea Partiers get under his skin: he can’t stand the disrespect. He can’t stand being made a fool of. His ego will be his ruin.

    James McKeane

    May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

    • Back in ’08, I made a $100 bet with a coworker that Obama’s undoing would be a scandalous extra-marital affair. That hasn’t happened yet.

      E. Rekshun

      May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

      • Well Obama’s homosexual affairs (reputedly) have been entirely hushed up by the media, so maybe you already won that bet except nobody was allowed to notice.

        peterike

        May 30, 2013 at EDT pm

  10. Obama is half-white, both with parents with high educational achievements. His dad (Kenyan) went to Harvard and she was a PhD student. He does not belong in the same sentence as your average African-American.

    Chris P.

    May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

  11. Isn’t the LSAT out of 180? Wouldn’t a 45 be embarassingly low?

    Anonymous

    May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

  12. But didn’t Obama just say that blacks have to work twice as hard as everyone else to achieve anything here in the US?

    He’s living proof.

    Camlost

    May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

  13. Funny as well is how deterministic you think tests are. Guess differently on a question or misfill a bubble? That 46 is probably now a 45.

    Also, why should I compare Obama with only blacks? What about graduates of the same school? Or graduates with good hair who were born on August 4? Now anyone can say (s)he’s in the 99.9whatever percentile.*

    *among animals

    .

    May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

  14. “If it’s true that there’s a 1SD IQ difference between blacks and whites, then it’s as common for a black man to have an IQ of 145 as it is for a white man to have an IQ of 160, which puts Obama in the 99.99 percentile among blacks, or one in 10,000. So if there are 35 million blacks in the United States, then Obama is among the smartest 3,500 blacks.”

    The worst thing Obama’s done is only have 2 kids. Wish he had more kids to spread his good genes.

    aki (@DSGNTD_PLYR)

    May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

    • What is this, “More Sex is Safer Sex”?

      .

      May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

    • speaking of his kids, where does Lion think they will go? Schools that the obamas have ties to or Stanford like Chelsea Clinton?

      uatu

      May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

      • Harvard, Princeton, or Spelman (*maaaaybe Howard*). And no, not Columbia.

        Scipio Africanus

        May 30, 2013 at EDT am

    • Obama is most likely a homosexual who married out of political ambition.

      Conquistador

      May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

  15. If Obama got a 45 on the LSAT that may have been a bit of a fluke. As La Griffe du Lion explained a few years ago, the more extreme someone’s score, the more likely it is a fluke and their “true” score (the average score they would make if they took several versions of the test over several days) is a bit closer to the median. To judge Obama’s IQ from his test scores I’d like to inspect his other test scores (like, say, SAT) as well and average the observations since conversions are approximate and a single data point provides less confidence than several.

    Veracitor

    May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

    • Very good point. I would not be surprised if Obama’s IQ was anywhere in the range 125-145. He has done very well professionally, and did well an one test, but we have no idea how good at math he is and he has never said anything intellectually interesting in his life. Then again, neither did Romney, and he was even smarter. I will say that Obama seems to have more respect for science than any president I can remember.

      John

      May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

      • Actually, Obama admitted on the Jay Leno show that he is unable to help his daughters with 8th grade math. He said “The math stuff I was fine with up until about seventh grade…”

        http://www.realclearpolitics.com/video/2012/10/25/obama_on_doing_homework_with_kids_the_math_stuff_i_was_fine_with_up_until_about_7th_grade.html

        This, combined with how lost he gets without a TelePromter, gives the impression that he is not all that bright.

        Melykin

        May 30, 2013 at EDT am

      • Smart liberals like to pretend they aren’t that smart.

      • I’m not buying it. He hasn’t done anything as president to demonstrate that he is intelligent, but just the opposite. There is no concrete evidence he got a high score on the LSAT, just speculation. And since grades in law school presumably are somewhat subjective, his high grades could be the result of AA combined with his winning personality and schmoozing.

        Melykin

        May 30, 2013 at EDT am

      • Law schools have blind grading. The professor doesn’t know who wrote the exam.

      • Smart liberals like to pretend they aren’t that smart.

        I thought it was smart conservatives who liked to pretend they aren’t smart (i.e anti-science views). Liberals are the party of intellectuals.

        Law schools have blind grading. The professor doesn’t know who wrote the exam.

        But don’t they have the discretion to bump you up a grade after the exam results are in. I would have more faith in obama’s grades if he wasn’t the first black president of law review. Given the amount of symbolism and prestige harvard invested in him, they might have given him a boost.

        Also an unnamed blogger complained about obama’s constitutional ignorance:

        ” Lochner v. New York is one of the most important cases in Constitutional Law. How could someone who was supposed to be a professor of Constitutional Law at a top-14 law school not know that Lochner v. New York was about the Supreme Court overturning a New York STATE statute and not a federal statute? And then he was thirty years off because Lochner was decided in 1905.

        I used to think Obama earned his magna cum laude from Harvard Law School, but now I have to wonder.”

        smartandwise

        May 30, 2013 at EDT pm

      • 1. They aren’t pretending, they really believe in the creationism crap. They really ARE stupid.

        Liberals say they aren’t smart while demonstrating intelligence through their actions. Conservatives say they are samrt while demonstrating stupidity through their actions.

        2. Obama was elected to law review by other students, not by the Harvard administration.

        3. Liberal blinders I guess.

      • Obama was elected to law review by other students, not by the Harvard administration.

        I understand, but it would still be embarrassing and make a mockery of Harvard’s brand if the first black president of the prestigious Harvard Law Review proved to be a mediocrity, so if Obama got unimpressive grades, I’m sure the professors would be asked to use their discretion to bump him up a notch. I’m not saying that’s what happened, but you can’t rule it out.

        smartandwise

        May 30, 2013 at EDT pm

      • He needed good grades to make law review in the first place. And since grades are private, no one would know if he got lower grades after his first year.

      • Law schools have blind grading. The professor doesn’t know who wrote the exam.

        Oh tosh. How hard is it to figure out? Obama — who is nothing if not conniving — only has to slip into an answer “as I know from growing up as a black person…” and bingo, the professor knows who it is. Or perhaps he just started every answer with “let me be clear…”

        peterike

        May 30, 2013 at EDT pm

  16. How common is it for a black man to have an IQ of 145?

    IQ variance also varies across races.

    According to Charles Murray, the white STDEV is 16.7 (not 15) and according to Hsu East Asians have the same STDEV.

    Murray also said in the Bell Curve that the African American STDEV is 13. African immigrants have an even lower IQ STDEV and average because American blacks are ~20% white.

    Interestingly, Murray claims the Ashkenazi Jewish IQ STDEV is also 13. The Indian upper caste STDEV is hard to figure out because Indian IQ variance almost certainly varies by caste just as it does for their IQ average.

    The Undiscovered Jew

    May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

    • Judging individuals from solid middle class backgrounds from my own observations, I found White gentiles to be more slightly more intelligent than Asians who are more intelligent than Ashkenazis. I found prole Jews to be slightly smarter than prole gentiles. Upper middle class Jews seem to be the slightly smarter than upper middle class Gentiles. Asians are consistent throughout, although I found immigrant Asians tend to be more clever and conniving than their acculturated kin.

      Just Speculating

      May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

      • I found White gentiles to be more slightly more intelligent than Asians who are more intelligent than Ashkenazis.

        I’ve found the range of gentile intelligence is very broad, more broader than Ashkenazi variance. Gentiles produce everything from exceptional geniuses to drooling idiot trailer trash and anything in between. Jews don’t have a lower class, though there are prole Jews. While I haven’t met any stupid Ashkenazi Jews I have met plenty of Jews who are non-entities with a smart fraction IQ.

        It is important to keep in mind that “Indian” is not a useful racial category for HBD purposes. Lumping Brahmins, untouchables, Zoroastrians, etc. into one category makes as much sense as treating Ashkenazi Jews, Portuguese, Sicilians and Swedes as a “European” race.

        Well, there is a European race and an Indian/Dravidian race. The Indian sub-castes and Euro subgroups are ethnic groups within the same two races.

        The Undiscovered Jew

        May 30, 2013 at EDT pm

    • It is important to keep in mind that “Indian” is not a useful racial category for HBD purposes. Lumping Brahmins, untouchables, Zoroastrians, etc. into one category makes as much sense as treating Ashkenazi Jews, Portuguese, Sicilians and Swedes as a “European” race.

      Peter the Shark

      May 30, 2013 at EDT pm

  17. Lion, since you scored very well on the LSAT, did you apply to any elite law schools? Did you get accepted to any elite law school and, if not, why not and what could you have done to have changed that?

    In 1998, I scored a 720 (98th percentile) on the GMAT and was disappointed to not get accepted at Stanford, the only elite biz school I applied to.

    E. Rekshun

    May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

    • The purpose of this blog is to give advice to young people so they don’t make the same mistakes that I did.

      • Could you please blog about this* ?

        * http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-505123_162-57586171/court-opens-window-of-hope-for-student-debtors/

        The case before the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, decided on May 22, presented a colorful, but by no means unique, display of the lengths courts think people should go to re-pay a loan. The plaintiff in the case, one Michael Hedlund, took on about $85,000 in debt to get an undergraduate degree at the University of Oregon and a law degree at Willamette Law School. He also took an internship with the Klamath County district attorney in Oregon and twice took the bar exam, failing both times. On his third try, Hedlund locked his keys in his car and missed the exam. When he couldn’t pass the bar, he lost his job and took another one as a counselor. He got married and had a child. When he was 33, he declared bankruptcy .

        The Undiscovered Jew

        May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

      • For someone who keeps saying that, you don’t sound like the kind of person who wants to give away his advantage, however slightly.

        .

        May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

  18. Yes, but he is half white. Does that not count for anything? It’s not like having a black father just completely negates his European heritage.

    AE

    May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

  19. First of all, I admit was was mistaken about Arizona State University. Based on its name I had thought it was the Grand Canyon State’s land grant university. Five minutes on Google shows that it actually started out as a teacher training school and was known as a college rather than a university until 1958. ASU is more like a (significantly) upgraded directional.

    Anyway, I am still puzzled why the outlook for ASU law graduates has gotten so much worse. Let’s assume that it’s the 30th-best law school in the country, though the precise rank doesn’t matter, and it’s been in roughly that position for the past 20 years. While the number of law school graduates obviously has grown explosively over the past 20 years, that’s been due mainly to a plethora of mediocre law schools opening. Existing law schools have expanded at a more modest pace. What that should mean is that an ASU law graduate should not have a more difficult time finding work today as compared to 20 years ago, except insofar as the recession has made it harder for everyone. In 1993 there were 29 law schools whose graduates were more highly regarded, and in 2013 that remains the same. I rather doubt that employers have suddenly started jumping over ASU law graduates to hire those from lesser schools.

    ironrailsironweights

    May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

    • Law schools fall into only two categories: Top Thirteen and TTT.

      • Why/how did Georgetown fall out of the T14?

        Renault

        May 30, 2013 at EDT am

      • “Law schools fall into only two categories: Top Thirteen and TTT.”

        I’m very skeptical of that. Are you saying that employers draw no distinctions between a degree from ASU Law School and one from, say, LaVerne College of Law?

        Peter

        ironrailsironweights

        May 30, 2013 at EDT pm

  20. Actually I thought it was that Obama scored somewhere in the 94th-98th percentile range, so he may have just as easily scored a 43 (still a real score) as opposed to a 45.

    I went to an elite law school (T6) and the people there seemed no less or more intelligent than other top people from other elite professions I have encountered. Different professions attract different personalities, but that is a separate story

    There seems to be a myth on this blog that anybody who did well at an Ivy or other top school, who is ambitious, becomes an I-banker. This was never true even at the height of the boom (roughly 10 years ago) of a very cyclical field.

    The main difference between law and other fields is that in medicine and I-banking there is a cut off to how many people can enter the field. In Engineering there is an IQ cut off because of the nature of the material (which can be gotten around, because of plug and chug and internet answers are so prominent). Law is really just a liberal art and any competent college student can get into a law school and study it. So basically unlike Med school, there isn’t much of a barrier to entry, but until the crash top people went to law school. Fussel called it the defining upper middle class profession for a reason.

    Anon1

    May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

    • Yeah, the article said Obama probably score in the 94-98%ile on the LSAT, but he could have scored in the 63%ile, relative to LSAT takers. Since the LSAT population probably has a mean IQ of 116 (SD 13) compared to the general U.S. population which has a mean IQ of 100 (SD 15), Obama’s IQ is either 135-139 or 120.

      smartandwise

      May 30, 2013 at EDT pm

  21. @ Renault

    “but to claim that Obama isn’t smarter than your average STEM student is ridiculous. There are a whole lot of completely average college students (meaning ~115 IQ or so) who major in STEM subjects”.

    And let’s say Obama gets a “C” in his organic chemistry class. A lot of STEM students are either engineering students and/or premeds.

    “Do you remember your STEM classes from college? I remember rooms full of completely average kids who still can’t write grown-up sentences”.

    I did remember my STEM classes and there were mostly premeds who aced Organic Chemistry. Organic Chemistry is no walk in the park either at Harvard or Bumblef*ck State.

    Just Speculating

    May 29, 2013 at EDT pm

    • I know of plenty of NAMS (mostly Indians and other south Asians) who study engineering but are terrible at it.

      First, they struggle to get the material. Second, they never show up to class. Third, they huddle together before an assignation is due, copying each others (mostly wrong) answers. But i can’t complain — at least not about much. Come exam time,they are totally fucked. Most of them fail or barely pass.

      Speaking of Indians: i’m often the only white guy in the Lab, and i can all hear them making nationalistic quips and comments. If whites said some of the things these Indians say — on a university campus of all places — they would be thrown out for sure — perhaps even the police called.

      ben

      May 30, 2013 at EDT am

      • I concur. I’m always puzzled about why Americans seem to believe south Asians are particularly intelligent. There is a very large Sikh population in Vancouver and, while they don’t form an underclass the way blacks or Hispanics do in the States, they don’t stand out as being very intelligent. The Chinese, however, do. When my son was taking STEM coursed as the University of British Columbia recently he told me that the classes were over 90% Chinese.

        In the UK the Pakistani population does form an underclass, or so I have heard. I think they are much more inbred than the Sikhs.

        Melykin

        May 30, 2013 at EDT am

      • Buy the way, in Canada quite a few Sikhs go into law, but few Chinese do. The Sikhs also get into politics a lot. They get elected but often come to grief over some sort of scandal involving money. Frankly, I wouldn’t do business with a Sikh since I would probably get ripped off. The Chinese (especially the ones from mainland China) are also morally challenged. There is a huge problem with them cheating in universities. They simply don’t see anything wrong with cheating. They don’t seem to feel any shame over it. It is the same with the hacking the Chinese government is involved in. You would think this would be a huge embarrassment for the Chinese government, but they just don’t give a damn.

        Melykin

        May 30, 2013 at EDT am

      • I really do not count Indians among the “NAMs”, but from my observations at a majority-NAM university, NAMs tend to dominate liberal arts fields and areas such as “criminal justice”. and “business” and tend to avoid the harder sciences (but they are just slightly underrepresented in biology), I actually think studying biology is like studying something economically useless such as theology or philosophy due to the relatively poor prospects of recent STEM graduates, but STEM demands more mathematics ability while theology and philosophy are more verbal.

        Black_Rose

        May 30, 2013 at EDT pm

  22. In an organic chemistry Practical Exam you have to be able to work out how to synthesise molecule A, do so, then isolate it, and then prove its identity and purity. No teleprompter is available and you can’t blame the judge if you fail.

    dearieme

    May 30, 2013 at EDT am

    • This doesn’t sound any more difficult than writing an answer to a contracts question, which you would surely fail if you hadn’t studied well.

      • You actually have to do it, you see. Writing an answer to a contracts question sounds to be the equivalent to answering an exam question on organic synthesis. But doing a synthesis is much more demanding. Have you tried it?

        dearieme

        May 30, 2013 at EDT pm

      • Yes, I took an Organic Chemistry class.

  23. ” How common is it for a black man to have an IQ of 145? If it’s true that there’s a 1SD IQ difference between blacks and whites, then it’s as common for a black man to have an IQ of 145 as it is for a white man to have an IQ of 160, which puts Obama in the 99.99 percentile among blacks, or one in 10,000. So if there are 35 million blacks in the United States, then Obama is among the smartest 3,500 blacks.”

    Is HBD blogging back, or do blacks score lower because of pervasive racism?

    Sid

    May 30, 2013 at EDT am

    • Pervasive racism is obviously what’s suppressing the IQ scores!

      • So called “dumb” conservatives aren’t the only ones who believe in creationism.

        melykin

        May 30, 2013 at EDT pm

    • @ Sid

      Remember that intelligence follows a bell curve distribution with a narrow tail. So you can’t just say 1 SD means that a black guy with an IQ of 145 is as rare as a white guy with 160. The narrower tail means it would be a lot more rare than that.

      destructure

      May 31, 2013 at EDT am

  24. @ Lioon

    Lockwood, Sailer and you are basing this on pure speculation. You’re assuming that, since BO was one of only 10 blacks from Cornell who applied to Harvard Law and only 2 attended that he must have one of the top 2 scores rather than one of the other 8 who didn’t score nearly as well. That appears to be a reasonable assumption. After all, one would assume that 1) the top two scores would be the ones most likely to be accepted and 2) that anyone accepted would attend. But I’m not convinced that’s necessarily true because 1) his Occidental/Cornell grades were still fairly weak and 2) someone might have personal reasons for not attending.

    In my opinion, he may “speak well” but he’s obviously and blatantly DAF. So it could be that he has a very high verbal but mediocre reasoning. That’s pretty much the opposite of STEM who tend to have very high reasoning but mediocre verbal.

    Still, I suspect that if BO had really done so well on his LSAT scores and Harvard grades that someone would have found a way to leak such flattering info to the media.

    destructure

    May 30, 2013 at EDT pm

    • It’s easy to get bad grades if he was lazy. And ironically, the bad grades INCREASE the likelihood that he had a high LSAT score, because that was needed to compensate for his bad grades and get admitted to Harvard.

      Also, magna cum laude means he had the mental ability to get good grades. It’s not easy to get magna cum laude from Harvard Law School.

      • the bad grades INCREASE the likelihood that he had a high LSAT score

        That’s speculative but still a very good point. There’s not enough hard evidence to reach a reasonable conclusion. In my humble opinion (and that’s all it is) he has a very high verbal and mediocre math & reasoning. Isn’t that what you’d expect from most lawyers anyway?

        destructure

        May 30, 2013 at EDT pm

      • Obama attended large institutions filled with very smart people. Punahou is one the nation’s largest and highest performing private academies (400 per class). The year Obama graduated Punahou was the largest single feeder school to Stanford (30 placements). When Obama attended Punahou, that institution’s students accounted for 75% of the state’s National Merit Scholars. Occidental isn’t tiny and Harvard Law is relatively large. The graduates of these institutions are well placed and know how to write yet one doesn’t see comments from them incredulous that others find him intelligent. That’s because such assessments are consistent with their experiences.

        Curle

        May 31, 2013 at EDT am

    • It wasn’t ten African-American students from Columbia that applied for Harvard Law School, but ten such students that applied for law school in general that year.

      “According to Lockwood, LSAC data reveal that during the 1987-88 academic year, ten African-American students from Columbia University applied to law school. Only two earned LSAT scores above the 63rd percentile, and those each had scores in the 94-98th percentile–i.e. scores between 42 and 45 on the 48-point scale then in use (166 to 171 on today’s 180-point scale). The other students earned scores that would have been extremely unlikely to qualify for admission, even considering factors such as affirmative action.”

      1. To get into Harvard Law School, you typically need a high LSAT score.

      2. Two African-American students from Columbia that applied to law school scored high enough to be realistically considered for Harvard Law School, even when considering affirmative action.

      3. Two 27-year-old African-American students five years out of college that year achieved scores in that range.

      4. Because of (1), (2) and (3) it is quite plausible that Obama had a high LSAT score.

      According to Occam’s razor, the simplest hypothesis should be selected until simplicity can be traded for greater explanatory power. Since the hypothesis that Obama had a high LSAT score is the simplest given the fact that you typically need a high LSAT score to be accepted at Harvard Law School and the available demographic data, it should be assumed that Obama had a high LSAT score. It’s hard to vary the fact that Obama had a high LSAT score given the fact that he was accepted to Harvard Law School and graduated magna cum laude, which is indicative of a good theory.

      Animus

      May 30, 2013 at EDT pm

      • Yes, a high LSAT score explains (1) why he was accepted to Harvard despite poor grades; (2) why he was able to obtain high grades at HLS; (3) why he was smart enough to write a memoir.

        People want us to believe that there was a 20-year-long conspiracy to take some random black guy and give him credentials he needed to become President.

      • Yes, a high LSAT score explains (1) why he was accepted to Harvard despite poor grades;

        His grades weren’t poor, and the fact that he was a black COLUMBIA graduate explains why he was accepted at Harvard. In addition his father went to Harvard so he was a legacy. Add to that he may have been politically savvy enough to make powerful connections:

        https://www.facebook.com/video/video.php?v=316323986048

        (2) why he was able to obtain high grades at HLS

        Assuming they weren’t bumped because of his status as historic law review president.

        (3) why he was smart enough to write a memoir.

        Someone wrote an entire book documenting evidence that Obama didn’t write his.

        People want us to believe that there was a 20-year-long conspiracy to take some random black guy and give him credentials he needed to become President.

        I don’t believe there was any conspiracy, and he probably is a genius like you say. But he could instead just be one of those 120 IQ guys who knows how to work the system.

        smartandwise

        May 30, 2013 at EDT pm

      • Law school grading is blind, and president of Law Review is an elected position and not proof of higher grades than other law review students.

        Sarah Palin got elected governor of Alaska and she’s a moron.

  25. You’re right. Mensa That recruits at 2% level requires a 5% level for LSAT (167 – 169 depending on years).
    It´s an anomaly for ispe to require a 178 score (99.9%) knowing how easy is self administred test , i passed with an elementary level in english !

    Bruno from paris

    May 30, 2013 at EDT pm

  26. To further clarify this, a score of 45 on the LSAT probably means that Obama has an IQ in the top 0.5% of the population, but not the top 0.1% of the population, which means his IQ is between 142 and 149.

    The top 0.5% of the population equals IQ 138 on the standard scale where the U.S. mean is 100, and the SD is 15. We can be generous and round to 140. But that’s assuming that he scored 45 on the LSAT; which Steve’s article could not confirm..

    smartandwise

    May 30, 2013 at EDT pm

    • The top 0.5% of the population equals IQ 138 on the standard scale where the U.S. mean is 100, and the SD is 15.

      The STDEV for whites and East Asians is 16.7. Blacks have a STDEV of 13 as do Jews.

      The Undiscovered Jew

      May 30, 2013 at EDT pm

      • I think you’re better off assuming all races have the same SD. On some tests like the WAIS-III, blacks have a tiny SD of around 10 compared to 14.5 for whites, but then on the WISC-IV blacks have an SD bigger than whites. I think most of the SD differences between races is just statistical noise because SD is much harder to measure than the mean is. To find the mean IQ of a race you just need to test typical blacks, or typical whites, but to find each race’s respective SDs, you have to make sure your sample includes all segments of each race in the correct proportions. Very hard to do, especially for blacks where most members of the inner city under class are never tested.

        Bottledwater

        May 31, 2013 at EDT am

      • I think most of the SD differences between races is just statistical noise because SD is much harder to measure than the mean is.

        Incorrect. The standard deviation isn’t any more difficult to measure than the mean because they are both derived from the sample set. If the measured SD differences across races isn’t reflective of their populations than neither will be the mean.

        The Undiscovered Jew

        May 31, 2013 at EDT pm

      • Actually Undiscovered Jew, it is much harder to estimate the SD than the mean. If you want to estimate a race’s mean, you just sample a group of people from the average social class of that race. This will correctly determine the race’s mean IQ, but it will grossly underestimate the SD because your sample is largely missing the extremes. Not testing extremes doesn’t invalidate the mean because extremes at both end cancel each other out, but it does invalidate the SD by artificially narrowing the score range.

        smartandwise

        June 1, 2013 at EDT pm

      • If you want to estimate a race’s mean, you just sample a group of people from the average social class of that race. This will correctly determine the race’s mean IQ, but it will grossly underestimate the SD because your sample is largely missing the extremes.

        IQ statisticians do adjust for extremes that may not have been included in their sample.

        But even if they don’t control for extremes, the standard wouldn’t be harder to calculate because, assuming you define the extremes as 3 STDEVs plus and minus the mean, then +/- 3 STDEVs includes ~99.5% of the IQ range. Unless the sample is not reflective of the true population (which would make the mean dubious as well) there is no reason to believe calculations for IQ standard deviations are faulty.

        The Undiscovered Jew

        June 2, 2013 at EDT pm

      • Undiscovered Jew, let’s say I wanted to know the average IQ of Americans. All I would have to do would test a sample of mail carriers because this is an average American job, However this sample would be useless for telling me America’s SD because both the smartest 10% and dumbest 10% of Americans tend not to become mail carriers so the SD would be deflated by several points. In order to know the SD of a population, you need either an entirely random sample which isn’t practical, or you need a sophisticated sampling methodology which matches your sample with census variables.

        Bottledwater

        June 3, 2013 at EDT am

  27. Speaking of Indians: i’m often the only white guy in the Lab, and i can all hear them making nationalistic quips and comments.

    lol.

    Yeah, let’s all get worked up about Indian jingoism because there’s so much to fear.

    Maybe they’ll shoot a few trash bags across the river towards Pakistan, or dump their bed pans out the window simultaneously towards China.

    Camlost

    May 30, 2013 at EDT pm

  28. Obama was not a National Merit scholar in high school. Puts a soft ceiling of 129 on his IQ if he took the PSAT. Vox Day addresses this.
    http://voxday.blogspot.com/2008/09/barack-obamas-iq-is-116_18.html

    Redneck Joe

    May 30, 2013 at EDT pm

    • I wasn’t a National Merit scholar (although I was a “finalist” on PSAT) and I scored higher on the LSAT than Obama, so this is proof of nothing.

      • I reviewed the post. I should have said “was not a semi-finalist or an outstanding participant.” Basically was not at the get together with the local reporter and parents for the kids who broke 1290 or whatever it was, something in that ballpark. There were 13 in my class of 230. Since you are Triple Nine qualified, you were in the group and thought it was no big deal, like me (800M, 630V). But Obama was not invited if what VD says is true. That isn’t proof of anything either, but it is significant in this discussion.

        Redneck Joe

        May 30, 2013 at EDT pm

      • Maybe Obama didn’t take the PSAT? That’s the simpler explanation for why he’s not a semifinalist.

      • Yes it is possible that he didn’t take it, but it is statistically more likely that he took it and was one of the 8 in Sailer’s story than the possibility that he didn’t take it and was one of the 2. Heh.
        “Percentage of American Harvard Law students who didn’t take the PSAT in high school” is probably a much lower number than “Percentage of minority Harvard Law students who scored below 1290 on the PSAT,” so I don’t have a reason to embrace the less likely scenario, especially since my subjective opinion leans more toward “comfortably above average” than toward “1 in a thousand” after hearing his impromptu speeches and comparing his thought processes to the scores of 130+ people I’ve associated with in my adult life.

        Redneck Joe

        May 30, 2013 at EDT pm

      • I’ve also theorized that the day Obama received his LSAT scores in the mail may be when his personality changed from the introverted nobody depicted in David Maraniss’ biography to the grandiose Future President of the United States […] For most of his life, Obama had receded into the background (an acquaintance who had known both Obama and George Stephanopolous at Columbia said Obama made almost no impression relative to the future Clinton aide and broadcaster). But, suddenly at Harvard Law, validated by his LSAT scores and surrounded by 22-year-old law nerds, the 27-year-old Obama was a rock star.

        I agree with Steve Sailer that receiving a validated high standardized test score on a g-loaded test can change one’s personality especially when one has a history of performing abysmally on them. Receiving my SAT scores were actually more psychologically traumatic than being diagnosed with type 1 diabetes in the ICU after a severe DKA episode as I accepted over the first day in the ICU as I reviewed my prior symptoms (frequent urination, cramping, fatigue) and the fact that I needed exogenous insulin to lower my blood glucose from ~600 mg/dL to 200 to conclude that I had uncontrolled diabetes for the last two beyond a reasonable doubt. Further tests, such as an A1C ~13.5, corroborated the diagnosis. I just reviewed my biochemistry knowledge and figured out what adjustments I had to make in my lifestyle. I felt no sense of failure or inadequacy having type 1 diabetes, since the pathophysiology is not influenced by one’s lifestyle choices nor affected by personal agency or prior knowledge; it just sporadically happened.

        I actually performed well during my first two semesters in college, but I became quickly discouraged as I read psychometric literature and HBD literature since I concluded that my superior performance at my undergraduate institution (average SAT score ~1000) was not a meritorious accomplishment because I was not competing against truly “elite” students. Even though I had a high GPA after my first year (simply by making it a priority to complete assignments and showing up to class), I thought I was a failure because I fail to attain a respectable score relative to my peers in high school and any subsequent academic “success” would not absolve me of the “mortal sin” of failing the SAT. I simply felt it was a personal indignity to attend a low-SAT, majority NAM school, and became apathetic, despondent, more personally insecure, and detached. With my familiarity with HBD, I felt insulted when the school commends itself for its commitment to “diversity”. This combination of apathy and insecurity led me to neglect my academic responsibilities as I only completed half of the assigned homework assignments and studied at most for two hours for an exam during the day of the exam if I even studied at all. As I allowed other interests to consume me, I retreated into the world of Pokémon and focused my attention on philosophy, economics, politics, finance, theology, and history during my leisure time as this reflected my natural inclination towards verbally-oriented subjects. Ironically, I regained my interest in molecular biology AFTER I graduated from college as that subject is inherently interesting to me as I read review articles found on Google scholar on oncology, metabolic diseases, and genetics during my free time. (And the metabolic knowledge is currently paying dividends since I use it to understand the pathology of diabetes and apply it to manage it.) When I fulfilled the requirements for my degree, I was not excited to graduate since I felt like that I really have not achieved anything that distinguished me from the general population nor was it challenging to me. In contrast, I eagerly anticipate being confirmed in the Catholic Church tomorrow since it reflects a personal decision to submit myself to God and the Church on my own agency as an independent adult and actively practice the faith by attending Mass, praying, receiving the Eucharist, going to confession, and fellowship. I used the phrase “on my own agency” to denote that I did not make this decision under the pressures of economic necessity (as one attains educational credentials for the purposes of labor market signaling or to obtain proficiency in a vocational field) or culture; my faith is not entirely a product of own choices since I believe that I needed the Spirit to indwelling in my soul in order to have the gift of faith.

        My mother coaxed me into taking the GRE so I could get into graduate school even though I was not interested in pursuing graduate education in the sciences. I took it and I got a score that vindicated me (it corresponds to a 145 on one online GRE to IQ conversion table, but it seems to be in the mid 130s because the conversion table makes a tenuous assumption about the average intelligence of college graduates so I adjusted downwards). I experienced a feeling of adequacy and relief instead of ecstasy, arrogance, and hubris; I then became my own woman as I accepted that I have a combination of moderately high intelligence and exceptional memory, and I became liberated from living in the shadows of the students in high school. Although I will always have Asperger’s syndrome and be introverted and social awkward, I became more confident and open about myself and less reclusive and diffident.

        Black_Rose

        May 30, 2013 at EDT pm

      • I don’t have a reason to embrace the less likely scenario, especially since my subjective opinion leans more toward “comfortably above average” than toward “1 in a thousand” after hearing his impromptu speeches and comparing his thought processes to the scores of 130+ people I’ve associated with in my adult life.

        How do 2 sigma people talk and think? Really, it’s not like people tell me their SAT or IQ scores, nor do I associate people on the basis of those scores. What do you look for in order to determine whether someone is a 2-sigma. Do you look for abstract and complicated thoughts, interconnected ideas, conceptual understanding as opposed to bromides and concrete factoids?

        As for my self, I stutter and pause when trying to articulate complex ideas (or express my emotions or opinions on a controversial topic). I don’t think using a teleprompter is a lack of intelligence since it may be difficult to sound elegant and fluid in an impromptu speech if one struggles to arrange their thoughts in a grammatically correct sentence. In my mind, there are so many phrases and (independent and subordinate) clauses in my thoughts that it is difficult to organize them correctly in a sentence seamlessly.. .

        Black_Rose

        May 30, 2013 at EDT pm

      • Obama probably did score below 1290 on the PSAT which is why he only went to Occidental despite his upper-middle class back ground, prestigious high school, academic ambition, and affirmative action access, however that doesn’t mean he didn’t score 45 on the LSAT. Nobody can be a genius on every test, unless they’re a super genius.

        For example Harvard students average an IQ equivalent of 143 on the SAT but regress to an IQ of 128 on the abbreviated WAIS. In their case 128 is the correct IQ because they were recruited by the SAT which creates a selection bias effect.

        Similarly, Harvard law students average IQ 140+ on the LSAT, but I bet if you looked at their high school PSAT scores they would be much less impressive. So Obama could have an IQ of 140 on the LSAT but 128 on the PSAT. If you average these you get an IQ of 134 (top 1%) however since only 0.5% of the population can average in the top 1% on both tests, his composite IQ becomes roughly 140. The same as his supposed LSAT score.

        By contrast, someone like the lion who got an IQ of 145 on the LSAT and maybe 140 on the PSAT, would have a composite IQ of 147 (one in a thousand level intellect)

        Bottledwater

        May 30, 2013 at EDT pm

    • I didn’t perform well on the SAT or PSAT, not even enough to be commended, because of sleep deprivation and anxiety as I was always second guessing myself and wondering if even the “easy” questions had some hidden trick. Vox is neglecting any potential “true score variance”. I was noted to be “intelligent” in part because I have a superior long-term memory and could focus in narrow intellectual domains, but appearing intelligence requires linking and synthesizing the inputs from memory to present novel and profound insights, but I disregard this because of my inferior test scores and attributed any academic success to memory and not intelligence. Yet, I performed exceptionally being the best student in history and AP biology in high school despite my self-perception of lacking intelligence due to a combination of memory, focus (not conscientiousness), and unrealized intelligence.

      Black_Rose

      May 30, 2013 at EDT pm

  29. I think you’re reading way too much in to a 1 point difference. Also, Obama isn’t exactly black the way people typically think of blacks… more like half-Kenyan. I wouldn’t be surprised if slaveowners artificially selected slaves for lower intelligence.

    John

    May 31, 2013 at EDT am

  30. To point out the difficulty in assigning IQ scores to sets of standardized test scores taken under hugely different circumstances, but also out of curiosity, how would you estimate the IQs of these two people:

    Person A: SAT 1350 (750M) on first try with no prep (post 1995). GRE: 1500(800M) with prep.
    Person B: SAT 1500 (800M) on first try with no prep (post 1995). GRE: 1500(800M) with prep.

    Anon

    May 31, 2013 at EDT am

  31. I used to think I was intelligent before I came here and to other alt-right sites. These places are bad for my self-esteem.

    FWG

    May 31, 2013 at EDT pm

    • If it’s bad for you imagine how badly it would crush the self-esteem of liberals whose entire notion of conservative thinking is encompassed by the perpetual idiocy of Fox News, the GOP and the neocon/theocon crowd. It’s up to all of us to get these views out into the mainstream, in whatever way we can, so that we might give liberals the shock of a lifetime when they discover that not only do intelligent conservatives exist, but they have developed a coherent philosophy which trumps their own and uses their own tactics (e.g. scientism) against them. They would be mortified to learn that all this time they’ve been attacking straw men, the simpleton’s version of conservatism. My advice: make a convert out of one college student and word will spread around campus fast, thanks to social media..

      Allerious

      June 2, 2013 at EDT am

      • I used to be a liberal and social democrat, but I became a Marxist-Leninist as I started to agree with far-left thinkers about the follies and wretchedness of capitalism, and I still hold on to that label, even though I am not sure I really believe in it anymore. I suppose I am still more of a Marxist-Leninist than a liberal, social democrat, or any type of conservative though.

        Still, I frequent HBD blogs and learned so much about NAMs, proles, social status, economics, and psychometrics.

        Black_Rose

        June 2, 2013 at EDT pm

  32. “They don’t even know much about great literature and the arts since most of their knowledge in that field is limited to higher brow pop culture. The next time you get a lecture from a lib-arts type, surprise him by asking him who wrote Anna Karenina and then laugh in their face when they draw a blank. I’d bet a higher percentage of engineering students would give the right answer than a humanities major”.

    Correct. Most Americans have never read Moby Dick. Most SWPLs in NYC have never heard of Henry James’ novel Washington Square.

    Just Speculating

    June 1, 2013 at EDT am

  33. “It’s the equivalent of Richard Dawkins saying ‘There is no God’ over and over again and then calling it ‘science’, which is supposed to be some sort of ‘argument’ despite having poor theological/philosophical training which would prevent such poor argumentation.”

    Anyone stating “there is no God” over and over again is arguing from a far sounder philosophical position than a person stating the exact opposite. Religion is, indeed, precisely the latter: a series of statements asserting that there is a god, over and over again, the totality of which is supposed to constitute a proper argument, but fails to do so under any real definition of philosophy or formal logic.

    Allerious

    June 2, 2013 at EDT am

  34. There has to be a flaw in your theory. I took the LSAT a few years after you, after they changed the scoring system, and was in the top 2 percent for that year (168). Yet my IQ, as measured at age 11 with the WISC, was only 132. It was enough to qualify for Mensa but nearly a standard deviation down from what you’re predicting. I remember Weschler testing a broader variety of abilities, whereas the LSAT left out my weaknesses, mainly math. The closest it got to math was those clown-car logic games that I had Kaplan to teach me.

    Slightly off-topic, what would the chances be of two parents having an IQ of 132 each, and their non-brain-damaged first-grader scoring a 91 on the same test? It would either be an unusually horrible reversion to the mean, or the public education therapist’s apprentice probably biffed administering the test, right? If the former is true, maybe you need to rethink the value of selective breeding.

    sheilatone

    June 10, 2013 at EDT am


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